One Chicken Helped Make This Girl Scout Legacy Possible
At the age of 5, Dianne Belk's family in rural Mississippi couldn't afford the yearly dues for her to become a Girl Scout. So she and her mother came up with a plan for her to sell the eggs from one chicken on the family farm to pay her dues.
Dianne's troop leader, Grace Wofford, helped her with the endeavor. As her Girl Scout participation grew, so did the expenses.
"Mama, I need another chicken!" she said a few years later.
This and so many other Girl Scout experiences paved the way to Dianne becoming a successful engineer. Retired now, she focuses on her real passion: reducing the barriers that young girls face in achieving equality in the world. Dianne and her husband, Lawrence Calder, are on this journey together.
"My husband and I are donors to Girl Scouts. In our 32 years together, we have lived in, worked in, and volunteered in four councils," Dianne says.
"We had been making annual gifts, buying cookies, and attending annual events. But then, as we thought about our wills and estate documents, we said, 'It isn't a question of: Why would we leave a legacy gift to Girl Scouts? It is a question of: Why wouldn't we?'" she says.
"When people ask me why I am a lifetime Girl Scout," Lawrence says, "I tell them about recognizing the impact and value of Girl Scouts in Dianne's life and seeing the difference that the movement can make in a girl's life."
As a Girl Scout, Dianne earned the Curved Bar award, the equivalent to the Gold Award today. In 2012, she was named the founding chair of the Juliette Gordon Low Society.
"My husband and I hope that others will join us in the Juliette Gordon Low Society as donors to this vital and demonstrably effective organization. And when they do, we encourage them to tell the council or Girl Scouts of the USA about their intent so they can be recognized and help spread the word about the power of planned giving!"
More Than Buying Cookies
By Barbara Sirvis, Ph.D.
In the last two years, my mother and I received our 75- and 60-year Girl Scout pins, respectively. Our journey with Girl Scouts has spanned the years and the nation. It all started with 1962 Roundup patrol, "Las Cancioneras."
Watching girls and listening to their stories over the years, my mother and I were inspired to do more than buy cookies. I renewed my commitment and, ultimately, made a bequest to the Girl Scouts of San Gorgonio Council and Girl Scouts of the USA. After attending a Juliette Gordon Low Society event, my mother had a similar experience and made pledges to Girl Scouts of North Carolina Coastal Pines and GSUSA.
Please join us and share our commitment to the Girl Scout movement, to support the largest girl-serving agency that provides programs to build girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. Join my mother and me in the Juliette Gordon Low Society by making a planned gift to Girl Scouts.
Let Us Know
Contact Harriet Hessam at (212) 852-8054 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how you can make a lasting difference with a gift from your estate or to let us know if you have already made this type of donation.